Role of the multidisciplinary team in breast cancer management: results from a large international survey involving 39 countries

Ann Oncol. 2012 Apr;23(4):853-9. doi: 10.1093/annonc/mdr352. Epub 2011 Aug 4.


Background: The optimal management of patients with breast cancer (BC) requires the expertise of specialists from different disciplines. This has led to the evolution of multidisciplinary teams (MDTs), allowing all key professionals to jointly discuss individual patients and to contribute independently to clinical decisions. Data regarding BC MDTs in different regions and countries are scarce.

Methods: The investigators of a large global phase III adjuvant BC trial being conducted by the Breast International Group were invited to respond to a questionnaire about the extent, structure, and function of BC MDTs.

Results: One hundred and fifty-two responses from 39 countries were received, and remarkable differences were noted in different geographic regions. Sixty-five percent of the respondents from eastern Europe, 63% from western Europe, 35% from Asia, and 25% from South America declared that MDT was a mandatory part of BC care in their country. Ninety percent of the respondents from Europe stated their MDTs met weekly, compared with only half of the respondents from Asia.

Conclusion: This survey is perhaps the first large-scale effort to collect information regarding BC MDTs from different parts of the world and provides objective information of frequency, composition, function, and working mechanism of BC MDTs.

Publication types

  • Multicenter Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Breast Neoplasms / therapy*
  • Clinical Trials, Phase III as Topic
  • Decision Making
  • Disease Management*
  • Female
  • Group Processes
  • Health Care Surveys*
  • Humans
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic